Contraception and Original Sin

Alice von Hildebrand wrote, regarding Satan, “Abortion is his greatest victory since original sin.” (New Oxford Review, "To the Editor," May 2015). May I demur? Artificial contraception is. Why? Because it repeats the original sin of Adam … [Read more...]

Preaching the Homily and the New Evangelization

Preaching in all its forms is indispensable to the Church’s mission given to her by Jesus Christ: “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching … [Read more...]

On Understanding Priestly Celibacy: A Suggestion

Discussion has recently arisen about priestly celibacy in the Catholic Church. Such discussion is not new. This time the discussion involves a pope, Pope Francis. The discussion springs from an interview with Eugenio Scalfari (published in … [Read more...]

Spring Reading for March 2015

Arriving at Amen: Seven Catholic Prayers That Even I Can Offer. Leah Libresco (Notre Dame, Indiana: Ave Maria Press, 2015) 192 pages; $12.12. (Reviewed by Fr. David C. Paternostro, SJ) --------- Master Thomas Aquinas and the Fullness … [Read more...]

The Holy Land

Spending the Christmas season in the Holy Land has made me much more sensitive to how communities are “ringing in” the New Year. As the date turned from 2014 to 2015, two very different calls for solidarity made the news. On the one hand, … [Read more...]

Winter Reading for January 2015

New Evangelization: Passing on the Catholic Faith Today. Cardinal Donald Wuerl.  (Huntington, Indiana: Our Sunday Visitor, 2013) 91 pages. (Reviewed by Dr. Edward Peters) ______ A Future Built on Faith: Religious Life and the Legacy … [Read more...]

An Advent Reflection: Redemptor Hominis, Redeemer of Man

Introduction The encyclical, Redemptor Hominis, has a specific place in the ministry of Pope St. John Paul II. It was proclaimed the first Sunday of Lent, 1979, the first encyclical of the new pontificate, hence the link to Advent—it … [Read more...]

Recognizing a Link in the Hermeneutic of Continuity

The ranks of those declared blessed and saint by the Church under the guidance of the Holy Spirit constitute the great array of our brothers and sisters who have been lifted up as models of holiness and powerful intercessors. While … [Read more...]

Sacred Tradition: The Forgotten Doctrine?

The miracle and mystery of divine guidance has been the primary constituent element of Church teaching over the centuries, and this guidance is what makes Tradition “sacred,” but rarely is it linked with the teaching of any other … [Read more...]

The Holy Family, Celibacy, and Marriage: A Reflection on the “Passage” from the Jewish Rite of Marriage to the Sacrament of Marriage

If the sacrament of marriage came to be specified at a particular moment, then as the renewal of marriage was itself an indication of a new beginning ... it makes sense that the marriage of Mary and Joseph was precisely the implicitly … [Read more...]

“Ressourcement,” “Aggiornamento,” and Vatican II in Ecumenical Perspective

(S)ome interpreters of Vatican II took renewal to be merely a matter of the Church’s adaptation or accommodation to the standards of the modern world ... they took aggiornamento as an “isolated motive for renewal” ... simply adapting to the … [Read more...]

Ora et Labora … and Vacation??

Religious ... are joined to Christ in his poverty, chastity, and obedience by a “total life-long gift of themselves.” For the consecrated religious, then, times of rest are to serve the total gift of self, as the gift is expressed both … [Read more...]

The Virgin Birth, Perpetual Virginity, and NFP

...we need to look back at the reign of Joseph’s direct ancestor, the great King David ... (which) will help us understand that Mary was ... the lifelong Spouse of the Holy Spirit, and that Joseph was her protector, but not her sexual … [Read more...]

How to Help Cohabiting Couples

I would like to point out what I believe to be the via media, whereby these our brothers and sisters in Christ can both be welcomed and challenged to live the call of their baptism.   But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the … [Read more...]

‘Til Death Do Thee Part

The necessary manifestations of love, to include self-sacrifice and self-giving, and an ongoing readiness to forgive, could only continue to be present in a marriage fueled by God’s graces. By the basic principles of neurology, we know … [Read more...]